A mum said she caught a daycare provider secretly breastfeeding her baby

Kwangmoozaa/ShutterstockAn unrelated baby being fed formula.
  • A single working mum who formula-fed her daughter discovered her daycare provider had been secretly breastfeeding the baby for months.
  • Upon discovery, the woman apparently said she was “saving” the baby from the “chemicals” in baby formula.
  • The mum wrote into Slate’s advice column, Dear Prudence, to ask whether she should report the daycare worker or blast her on social media.
  • She was advised to report the daycare worker.

A single mother said she was horrified to discover that her childcare provider had been breastfeeding her baby without her consent.

In a live chat with Slate‘s advice columnist Daniel Mallory Ortberg on Tuesday, the mum said that she had gotten off work early to pick up her baby daughter, only to walk in on a daycare provider nursing her child without her permission.

“[She] said that she was saving my baby from chemicals I was trying to force into her body and I should thank her for doing it all these months,” the mother told Ortberg.

The anonymous mum – who noted that she chose to formula-feed her adopted daughter because she wasn’t able to lactate – said that the daycare worker had made derogatory remarks concerning her decision to feed her child formula in the past.

“Obviously, I am not sending my daughter back there,” the woman wrote, but said she wasn’t sure whether she should “report her to the umbrella company she is under for home daycares” or “make a huge blast on social media.”

Ortberg’s response to the inquiry was horrified: “Oh my GOD. That is my first thought, is just: Oh, my GOD.”

And other readers had the same reaction:

“In addition to breastfeeding a child without consent of the parent, risking exposure to disease, the caregiver inserted herself in such an intimate way to disrupt the bonding process between adoptive mother and adopted child,” one reader wrote. “The daycare worker deserves every bit of scorn and scrutiny coming her way.”

“Incredibly dangerous,” another wrote. “What if she had a transmissible disease or was taking medication legal or otherwise that showed up in breast milk. Yes, report her. Heck you should consult a lawyer.”

Baby bottle formulaFlickr/Nerissa’s RingThis type of behaviour has happened before. (Baby not pictured.)

“If this isn’t worth reporting her to a supervising agency, I don’t know what is,” Ortberg said to the mother’s query. “Yes, your baby is, in the long run, safe and sound. But the whole point of providing daycare for working parents is saying, ‘You can trust me to keep your children safe and well-cared for, and I will act according to your wishes in your absence,’ not ‘As soon as you walk out the door, I’m going to raise your child how I see fit.'”

Ortberg advised that mum didn’t necessarily need to make a fuss on social media if it made her uncomfortable, but urged her to report the daycare worker’s behaviour regardless. The advice columnist went on to say that this is a huge breach of trust and should “absolutely be reported.”

The daycare worker’s alleged behaviour is not without precedent. In February 2017, a pre-kindergarten teacher in North Carolina was caught on tape breastfeeding mother Kaycee Oxendine’s 3-month-old son despite, according to Oxendine, having asked and been told no twice. No charges were filed.

Though it may be worth noting that cross-nursing has its benefits, it should never be done without the parent’s consent.

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